Born: May 22, 1930 - Deceased: May 10, 2020
Beulah May Penry Elder, nee , Dillard was born May 22, 1930 to John and Jane, nee Digby, Dillard in East St. Louis, IL. Beulah closed her eyes and boarded the sweet chariot bound for glory on May 10, 2020 at The Colonnade Senior Living in O’Fallon, IL after a two and one-half year battle with cancer.
Beulah was preceded in death by her:
- mother and father
- brother and sister-in-law, Edward and Emma Dillard
- sister and brother-in-law, Christine and Ernie Peiffer
- adopted sister, JoAnn Feegle
- husband, Norris Penry
- nephew, Joseph Peiffer
- step-daughter, Cynthia Elder
Beulah attended East St. Louis schools and graduated in January, 1948 with the National Honor Society Award from East St. Louis Senior High School. She was employed by Swift & Company until their closing in October, 1971. She then became Assistant to Dr. C. C. Kane, St. Clair County Coroner, performing Inquests and Inquiries into deaths. Shortly, the President of St. Louis Stockyards had an opening as his assistant, a position Beulah held until the President retired in 1987. A Board of Directors consisting of 11 professional men unexpectedly elected her President of St. Louis National Stockyards. The corporation purchased Oklahoma City National Stockyards, making her also Vice-President of National Stockyards, a position she held until 1993 when she retired.
In 1951 Beulah married Norris Penry, a marriage that lasted 47 years until his death in 1998. Beulah and Norris were members of the Nazarene Church where she held many offices, Director of the Junior Choir, Sunday School teacher, and church board secretary. Although Beulah had no biological children, she loved children and was a mother to many.
After the death of Norris, Beulah then renewed a 50 year friendship with Bob (Robert) Elder, in 2004. Beulah and Bob were married at St. Matthew Methodist Church on November 14, 2004, and they both joined St. Matthew UMC.
Beulah was a member of P.E.O. Chapter G.M., Rotary of St. Clair County West, Paul Harris Foundation, Mind’s Eye reader to the blind, St. Matthew Chancel Choir, Bible Boomers Class, and New Life Club.
Beulah is survived by her:
- Loving and caring husband, Bob Elder
- Sis (Glen) Briley
- Karol Dillard
- Carolyn (Billy) Mikel
- Ernie (Jane) Peiffer
- Dennis (Marcia) Dillard
- David (Angie) Feegle
- Jeff (Kate) Elder
- Dean (Carol) Elder
- Ashley (Tyler) Mueth
- Erica (Cadence Kirchner)
- Kelsey Elder
- Great nieces:
- Sherry Gravot
- Jennifer (Caleb) Heal
- Great nephews:
- John (Jen) Briley
- Adam (Shannon) Peiffer
- Ernest Peiffer, III
- Matthew Peiffer
- Aaron (Amber) Dillard
- several great-great nephews and nieces
- Cousins by marriage , Dr. Sam (Linda) Brinkley of Alton, IL
- Her step-great granddaughter, Stella, brought her the greatest joy.
Beulah was a beautiful and gracious lady who always found the good in every situation, and loved singing for her Lord. She had a heartwarming smile for everyone, loved to laugh, and we can’t forget shopping. Beulah and Bob spent many winters in Florida where they made good friends who became their extended family. Other close friends enriching her life were Jean and Harry Cruncleton, Nancy and Freeman Hartmann, Robert Stamm, Jim and Dotti Luechtefeld, and many at St. Matthews and the Nazarene Churches.
Memorials: Memorials may be made to the Hospice of Southern Illinois, St. Matthew’s UMC, or St. Clair Memorial Park Cemetery and may me sent to Kurrus Funeral Home.
Funeral: Private family services. Interment at St. Clair Memorial Park Cemetery, Fairview Heights, IL. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.